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A panel of state and federal judges, legal experts and attorneys will debate the controversial issue of sentencing guidelines on Tuesday, March 30, at 4 p.m. at Colby College. The event will be held in room 100 of Lovejoy Building on the Waterville campus and is sponsored by Colby’s Goldfarb Center for Public Affairs and Civic Engagement. It is open to the public and free of charge.

The topic of sentencing guidelines is one of the most controversial in the law today. Judges detest them, Attorney General John Ashcroft has threatened judges who do not conform with guidelines, and many state legislatures are examining the issue.

The Colby panel will be chaired by Colleen Khoury (Colby Class of 1964), dean of the University of Maine School of Law. Panelists include David R. Beneman, an attorney with Levenson, Vickerson & Beneman in Portland; Hon. G. Arthur Brennan (Colby Class of 1968), a justice on the Superior Court of the State of Maine; Evert Fowle, district attorney for Kennebec County; Hon. Nancy Gertner, a judge with the United States District Court for the District of Massachusetts; Hon. Janet Mills, state representative from Farmington; and Paula D. Silsby, United States attorney for the District of Maine.

The panel is being held in conjunction with Colby’s 2004 Morton A. Brody Distinguished Judicial Service Award, which will honor United States Circuit Judge Richard Sheppard Arnold of Little Rock, Ark.

The Goldfarb Center for Public Affairs and Civic Engagement, new this academic year, is an innovative academic initiative designed to engage Colby students and faculty in projects in the local community, the state of Maine, the nation and other countries where they study and work.